Boston Celtics defeat Cleveland Cavaliers, 120-88

CLEVELAND — I believe you call it P-R-O-F-E-S-S-I-O-N-A-L-I-S-M. The Celtics might as well have shown up for this game carrying violin cases.

The score didn’t lie. A 120-88 score seldom does. It was a thorough domination, a total beatdown, a complete mastery in the final three periods of a team that led the league with 61 victories this season, but one which has now lost home playoff games to the Boston Celtics by margins of 18 in Game 2 and 32 in Game 5.

Doc Rivers ...

CLEVELAND — Silence and confusion were the coherent themes in the Cavaliers locker room following their 120-88 Game 5 loss to the Celtics. A team so primed for success, so ready for a title run and so geared to cruise to the Eastern Conference finals is now one game from elimination.

No one in the Cleveland locker room at Quicken Loans Arena expected to approach abject failure, especially so soon. The No. 1-seeded Cavaliers were supposed to be done with Boston and prepa...

CLEVELAND — Everything was happening too quickly. Kevin Garnett was abusing Antawn Jamison in the paint. Ray Allen was running the baseline like a medal was at stake. Paul Pierce was trying his best to get himself involved offensively. And this was all in the first quarter.

The energy and urgency inherent in a critical Game 5 on the road had the Celtics playing in fast forward, trying to attack the Cleveland Cavaliers with a flurry of rushed shots.

Rajon Rondo, whose...

CLEVELAND—The Boston Celtics pushed the Cleveland Cavaliers dangerously close to an early start to the Summer of LeBron.

Ray Allen scored 25 points, Rajon Rondo scored all of his 16 in the second half and the Celtics, once thought too old to challenge for another title, beat LeBron James and the Cavs 120-88 in Game 5 on Tuesday night to move within one win of knocking the NBA's top team from the playoffs.

Paul Pierce added 21 and Kevin Garnett 18 for the Celtics, who...